GENEVA/LONDON: Iran observes all US ships in the Gulf region and has an archive of images of their daily movements, the head of Iran’s navy, Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi, said on Tuesday, according to the Young Journalists Club news site.
“We observe all enemy ships, particularly America, point-by-point from their origin until the moment they enter the region,” Khanzadi said, noting that images were recorded using Iranian drones. “We have complete images and a large archive of the daily and moment-by-moment traffic of the coalition forces and America.”
Iran and the US came to the brink of war last month after the Islamic Republic shot down a US drone, nearly prompting a retaliatory attack which US President Donald Trump called off at the last minute
Meanwhile, the Swedish-based operator of the British-flagged tanker seized last week by Iran said on Tuesday it was still awaiting permission to visit the ship’s 23 crew members.
“We continue to focus our efforts on supporting the families of those affected in India, Russia, Latvia and the Philippines and will continue to offer full support until all 23 crew members are released and safely back with their families,” it said in a statement.
Stena Bulk added that all necessary notifications had been made for the Stena Impero’s transit of the Strait of Hormuz, which it said was carried out in full compliance with all international maritime regulations.
“We can confirm that we are not aware of, and nor is there any evidence of a collision involving the Stena Impero,” it said.
On Saturday, Iran said the tanker was seized because it had collided with a fishing boat.
On Tuesday, the UK approached EU nations to join its proposed European-led naval missions for safe shipping in the Strait of Hormuz, with France, Denmark, Italy and the Netherlands all showing strong support for the possible mission.